FSU Basketball At A Glance: The Ferris State men’s basketball squad resumes Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) action by hosting Wayne State Wednesday, Jan. 9, in an 8 p.m. (EST) tilt at FSU’s Jim Wink Arena in Big Rapids, Mich.
Media Coverage: Wednesday’s game can be heard live locally on News Talk 1460 AM (WBRN) with Jason DaDay providing the play-by-play coverage. Also, a live video and audio webcast will be available for the game through B2 Networks for a $6 fee. The webcast can be acccessed via the FSU Athletics Website at www.ferris.edu/sports (Click on B2 Networks icon). Live internet statistics will also be available on the FSU athletics website.
Ticket Info: Tickets for all 2007-08 Bulldog basketball home games will be available at the door one hour prior to tipoff. Single-game general admission ticket prices are $7 while FSU students are admitted free with ID. Call (231) 591-2860 for more information.
About Ferris State: Ferris State University is a NCAA Division II school located in Big Rapids, Mich., with an enrollment of 12,578. The Bulldogs are a member of the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC). Big Rapids is located in West Michigan approximately 60 miles north of Grand Rapids or 40 miles west of Mount Pleasant, Mich.
Saturday Road Game: The Bulldogs visit rival Grand Valley State Saturday (Jan. 12) evening for an 8 p.m. (EST) GLIAC outing inside GVSU’s Fieldhouse Arena at Allendale, Mich. The Lakers are presently ranked second in the NCAA Division II Men’s Basketball Poll and undefeated (17-0) to date this campaign. The game will be televised in Michigan on Comcast Local. Also, the game has been chosen for a free live video webcast by CSTV in partnership with the NCAA. Visit the FSU athletics website (www.ferris.edu/sports) for a link to the webcast.
Home Stretch: Wednesday’s game versus Wayne State concludes a three-game Bulldog homestand. However, after Saturday’s visit to Grand Valley State, the Bulldogs will return home for three more GLIAC games next week inside Wink Arena against Northwood (Jan. 14), Gannon (Jan. 17) and Mercyhurst (Jan. 19). Ferris played four home games in November before having none in December. The Bulldogs have six January home contests and will have four more regular-season home tilts in February.
FSU Earns Revenge: Ferris State reversed the score on Tiffin (Ohio) last Saturday (Jan. 5) as the Bulldogs posted their third consecutive victory of the season with a 72-62 triumph over the visiting Dragons at FSU's Jim Wink Arena in Big Rapids, Mich. The Bulldogs, who suffered an identical 72-62 setback on the road against Tiffin earlier this year (Dec. 8), took a slim 32-29 halftime advantage before outscoring TU 40-33 in the final period. The Dragons are currently an NCAA Division II independent school that will join the Great Lakes Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (GLIAC) for the 2008-09 season. FSU forced 26 Dragon turnovers in a miscue-plagued contest. The Bulldogs finished with 22 turnovers of their own, but also held a 36-26 rebounding edge and shot 48.3% (29-60) from the field. Freshman guard DeJuan Wright (Detroit/Henry Ford) tallied 18 points and seven rebounds for Ferris State in the victory. Freshman center Justin Keenan (Grand Rapids/Ottawa Hills) added 15 points and seven boards in a supporting cause while the Bulldogs also received a personal career-high 14 points off the bench from junior forward Jason Holder (Saginaw/Arthur Hill).
FSU Beats Kuyper: Ferris State used the home-court edge to its advantage en route to a convincing 88-69 non-league triumph over visiting Kuyper (Mich.) last Thursday (Jan. 3) evening inside FSU's Jim Wink Arena. The Bulldogs, who were playing at home for the first time since Nov. 29, registered their second consecutive victory with the win over the Grand Rapids-based school, which is midst its first season of intercollegiate athletics competition. FSU owned a commanding 53-33 rebounding edge as the Bulldogs pulled down 28 offensive caroms. Ferris also forced 18 Cougar turnovers and made six three-pointers in the win. Justin Keenan continued his outstanding offensive play by scoring a career-high 25 points and hauling down a personal-best 14 boards. Both also represented game-highs for the 6-6 Keenan.
Last Campaign: Ferris wrapped up its 2006-07 men's basketball season with an 10-18 overall record and made its fourth consecutive GLIAC Tournament appearance last campaign. The Bulldogs placed tied for third in the GLIAC North Division regular-season standings with a 8-10 league slate this campaign after advancing to the NCAA Division II Great Lakes Regional Tournament the previous two seasons. FSU captured back-to-back GLIAC North Division titles in 2003-04 and 2004-05 along with advancing to the NCAA-II Sweet Sixteen in 2004-05.
The Bulldog Roster: Ferris’ 2007-08 roster includes one senior, three juniors and 10 freshmen. Eight of the 14 players are guards while the remaining six are frontcourt players. All 14 players on the Bulldogs’ 2007-08 roster hail from Michigan.
Head Coach Bill Sall: A 1994 Calvin graduate, sixth-year FSU head coach Bill Sall previously held assistant coaching positions at Calvin (1992-95), Ferris State (1995-98) and Hillsdale (1998-02) prior to being named Ferris State’s 11th head coach. The Zeeland, Mich., native served as Ferris’ interim head coach for a portion of the 1995-96 campaign and led the Bulldogs to a 5-8 mark. Before joining the coaching ranks, Sall was a standout player at Calvin from 1985-90. He twice (1989-90) received second-team National Association of Basketball Coaches Division III All-America honors and led Calvin to three Michigan Intercollegiate Athletic Conference (MIAA) championships, four NCAA-III Tournament bids and the 1990 NCAA-III Final Four. Sall has a current 88-83 (.515) career mark.
B2 Broadband Webcasts: A live broadband video and audio webcast will be available via B2 Networks for all of FSU’s home games and selected road contests this season. The cost is $6 per game and includes live video along with a radio audio feed. To access the service or obtain more info, please visit the FSU Athletics Website at www.ferris.edu/sports.
Live Internet Stats: “Live Stats” of all 2007-08 Ferris State home games will be provided in progress via the internet. Visit the site at www.ferris.edu/sports and click the “Live Stats” icon to access.
GLIAC Games On The Air: All eighteen of FSU’s 2007-08 league games are tentatively slated to be carried live by local radio station WBRN (News Talk 1460 AM). FSU Assistant Athletics Communications Director Rob Bentley will once again call the play-by-play action on the road while Jason DaDay will be the on-air talent for home games. The audio from road contests can also be accessed live via the internet by clicking on the Bulldog Athletics Webcasts icon at www.ferris.edu/sports.
On The Internet: Ferris State University Athletics’ official web site can be found at www.ferris.edu/sports. The site features information on all FSU varsity programs including rosters, stats, yearbooks and more.
Bulldog History: Ferris State’s impressive basketball tradition includes 11 GLIAC titles, eight NCAA Division II Tournament appearances and a berth in the 1988 NCAA-II Elite Eight. Ferris, which last won the GLIAC Tournament championship during the 1997-98 campaign, captured a league record four consecutive conference titles from 1986-90. FSU has won more GLIAC Championships (11) than any other league member.
Turning It Around: The Bulldogs had posted only a 21-82 (.204) mark in the four seasons prior to head coach Bill Sall's arrival, but have since went 83-75 (.525) and claimed two divisional titles while making two NCAA-II Tournament appearances in his five previous seasons at the helm. FSU won only four games (4-22) the year before Sall arrived in 2001-02. Additionally, Ferris notched its fifth-straight 10-plus win campaign in 2006-07. Prior to the current stretch under Sall, the Bulldogs had not won more than eight games in the previous four seasons.
Ferris Picked Fourth: Ferris State was picked to finish fourth in the 2007-08 GLIAC Men's Basketball North Division Preseason Poll, which was announced during the league's media day teleconference (Oct. 24) held this season. The poll was chosen for the first time in league history by selected members of the media and the GLIAC's Sports Information Directors. The 30-member group tabbed Grand Valley State and Findlay to win the conference's North and South Division titles, respectively. The Bulldogs totaled 114 points in the balloting.
The Coaching Staff: FSU head coach Bill Sall returns his coaching staff intact from a year ago, including top assistant coach Cory Anderson. Anderson, who played for Ferris from 1996-98, is in his ninth season as a full-time assistant coach. Volunteer Assistant Coach Bill Killian also returns for his sixth season on Sall’s staff. Longtime West Michigan high school coach Dave Schlump, who formerly coached at Cedar Springs (Mich.), is currently in his fourth campaign as a volunteer assistant for the Bulldogs. The newcomer to the staff is former Cornerstone University standout Andy Bronkema, who teaches at Big Rapids’ Crossroads Charter Academy.
The Bulldog Tradition: The 2007-08 campaign marks the 80th season of Bulldog men’s basketball. The program began in 1925 although Ferris did not field a team from 1942-45 due to World War II. FSU has compiled a 950-882 (.519) all-time mark. The Bulldogs have won 11 GLIAC titles, made eight NCAA Division II Tournament appearances and reached the 1988 NCAA-II Elite Eight. Ferris captured a league-record four consecutive GLIAC titles from 1986-90.
All-Tourney Team: Ferris’ Justin Keenan was named to the all-tourney team as the Bulldogs split two games at the 16th annual AT&T Alascom Jamboree (Dec. 28-29) hosted by the University of Alaska-Anchorage in Anchorage, Alaska. He was also chosen as the event’s Player of the Game as the Bulldogs snapped a six-game losing skid with a win over Alaska-Fairbanks in the final day of action.
Youth Served: FSU’s roster this season includes 10 freshmen, nine of whom are new to the program as true freshmen. The Bulldogs also have one redshirt freshman in guard/forward Lou Williams (Muskegon Heights). Ferris’ top six scoring leaders this campaign are all in their freshman seasons with forward/center Justin Keenan leading the team in both scoring (15.9 ppg) and rebounding (8.4 rpg) to date. Nine freshmen have played for FSU this year as the current roster features only three uppperclassmen and one senior in forward C.J. Van Wieren (Holland/West Ottawa).
Freshman Production: Ferris’ freshman class has accounted for 760 of the squad’s 945 total points (80%) to date this season. Additionally, 390 of FSU’s 527 total rebounds (74%) this year have came from rookie players.
Bulldog Bites: Ferris State notched its 950th all-time win with last Saturday’s triumph over Tiffin at Wink Arena ........ The Bulldogs return home to host Northwood Monday (Jan. 14) night with the league tipoff set for 8 p.m. (EST) at Jim Wink Arena.
The Records: The Bulldogs, who have won three-straight outings to date, maintain a current 6-8 overall record this year and are 1-2 in league play. Wayne State currently holds an 8-4 cumulative record and is 2-2 in the GLIAC this season.
Scouting Wayne State: The Warriors are led in scoring by senior guard/forward Wynn Sarden (16.8 ppg). They are presently 8-4 overall and 2-2 in GLIAC action this season following last Thursday’s (Jan. 3) 55-53 conference road setback at nationally-ranked Findlay. WSU recorded a 13-13 overall record last year and placed tied for second in the GLIAC’s South Division with a 9-8 ledger. The Warriors are presently 6-0 at home, but only 1-3 in road games this year and have dropped three of their last four contests overall after being picked to finish second in the 2007-08 GLIAC Preseason South Division Media Poll. David Greer is in his seventh season at the Warrior helm and owns a current 99-81 (.550) record.
Series Information: The Bulldogs hold a 34-33 series’ edge over Wayne State, but have dropped 10 of the last 11 series’ games to date. FSU fell to the Warriors 89-78 last year (2/15) in the Motor City. In the last matchup at Jim Wink Arena (2/16/06) , Ferris snapped a nine-game series’ losing streak with a 70-65 triumph, which is the squad’s only win over WSU since the 1996-97 season. Bulldog head coach Bill Sall currently holds a 1-7 career coaching mark versus Wayne State.